TS Eliot's estate invites cultural responses to 2022 centenary of 'The Waste Land'

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TS Eliot’s poem ‘The Waste Land’, first published in the inaugural issue of the Criterion in October 1922, celebrates its centenary in 2022 - and the mark this moment, the poet and playwright’s estate is inviting theatre-makers, dramatists, choreographers, video artists, composers and artists to respond to the poem.

The estate’s trustees say they always attempted to strike a balance between remaining faithful to the poet’s wish that his work should not be staged or set to music (with the notable exception of the children’s verse of Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats) and, on the other, acknowledging the merits of creative adaptations of his work into other forms or media.

The estate adds that it cannot waive performance rights fees altogether but, throughout 2022, it would be “delighted” to help facilitate some projects, adaptations or use of The Waste Land that might ordinarily be judged to be too counter to Eliot’s proscriptions. “A number of commemorative events are already planned for 2022, but it’s our hope that these upcoming performances form only part of a wider celebration of The Waste Land’s enduring legacy.”

Those interested should email thewasteland@setcopyrights.co.uk, and the Eliot estate, together with Faber, will make every effort to consider each application carefully and be back in touch.

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